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  1. #11
    Advisory Panel Parashooter's Avatar
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    The assertion that N140 is unsuitable for the M1icon rifle appears unfounded. Explanation follows -

    One of the problems with the internet is that erroneous or incomplete information sometimes gets circulated and accepted to the point that it overwhelms the truth.

    In the case of M1 rifle port pressure, the erroneous information is that port pressure is primarily related to powder burning rate and bullet weight. The truth is that these are merely secondary factors. M1 port pressure is most closely related to gas volume (technically, mass and temperature), which is directly related to powder charge weight. Burning rate and bullet weight of course have a direct influence on PEAK pressure, but this occurs long before the bullet gets to the gas port.

    With light bullets, we normally use faster powders for best performance since the relative ease with which the bullet starts to move means we can use a fairly large charge of fast powder without excessive peak pressure. With heavy bullets that take longer to accelerate, charge tables tell us the slower powders will give the highest velocity with the lowest peak pressure.

    The M1 rifle's gas system was designed for the port pressures generated by the volume of gas produced by a charge of about 44 to 50 grains of powder behind a 173-grain bullet at 2640 fps (M1 Ball). It also happened to work just fine with about the same charge using 150-grain bullets at about 2800 fps (M2 Ball). The burning rate that gives these velocities to these bullets is about that we find in IMR 4895 and 4064. If we use a slower powder, say 4350, we find the appropriate charge for these velocities is heavier - about 55 grains for the 173 and 58 for the 150. Such heavier charges naturally generate a larger volume of gas, but at a slower rate that keeps peak pressure in normal limits. Given that the volume of the cartridge case and bore (up to the gas port) is a fixed quantity, the larger volume of gas necessarily translates to higher pressure at the gas port.

    Conversely, if we stick with 4895 but change to a 110-grain bullet, we can stuff in some 54 grains of powder at normal pressure, for a much higher velocity. Again, the heavier charge generates more volume of gas and gives high port pressure. With 200-grain bullets, on the other hand, we can get good performance with 45-50 grain charges of slightly slower powders like 4320 or 4350, giving the same gas volume and consequently appropriate port pressure.

    A lot of people who haven't well understood the role of gas volume have focused on burning rate or bullet weight instead - and that's what gets them into logical difficulty. It's very true that an optimum load of the slow powders with 150-180 grain bullets will give excessive M1 port pressure, and also true that the usual best bolt-gun loads of the really slow numbers (like 4831) with 200+ grain bullets will also give excess port pressure. What's missing in the logic is that it's neither the powder burning rate nor the bullet weight that's the problem's root cause - but rather the charge weight (mass, to be more accurate) and consequent gas volume.

    It's unfortunate this mistaken (or just incomplete) logic has been so widely publicized, since knowing the whole story really makes powder selection much easier. Regardless of bullet weight, powder charges below 50 grains will generally give appropriate M1 port pressure (or less). Between 50 and 52 grains is marginal. Over 52 grains we may begin to see risk of damage to the operating rod. Of course powders must be chosen that will also yield acceptable peak pressure and velocity. (50 grains of 4198 will still make a mess - thanks to excessive peak pressure - but the port pressure would be near normal.)

    There are certainly exceptions to this basic rule. Different powder compositions give off different volumes of gas for a given charge weight. But if we stick to the commonly-available rifle powders now on the market, there is surprisingly little variation in the mass/gas relationship and we're not likely to get in trouble with excess port pressure if we choose a published load using less than 50 grains of a powder that gives acceptable performance with our chosen bullet weight.

    I urge anyone finding this concept difficult to stick to their existing guidelines. After all, there's little to be lost by limiting one's bullet and powder choices to the accepted standards - 150-180 grain bullets and powders close to 4895's burning rate.

    In the estimates below, "P.Muzz" for a 23" barrel corresponds to the pressure behind the bullet at the M1 gas port, related to port pressure but not exactly the same.

    Cartridge : .30-06 Spring.
    Bullet : .308, 150, Hornady SP 3031
    Cartridge O.A.L. L6: 3.340 inch or 84.84 mm
    Barrel Length : 23.0 inch or 584.2 mm

    Predicted Data for Indicated Charges of the Following Powders.

    Matching Muzzle Velocity: 2700 fps or 822 m/s

    These calculations refer to your specified settings in QuickLOAD 'Cartridge Dimensions' window.
    C A U T I O N : any load listed can result in a powder charge that falls below minimum suggested
    loads or exceeds maximum suggested loads as presented in current handloading manuals. Understand
    that all of the listed powders can be unsuitable for the given combination of cartridge, bullet
    and gun. Actual load order can vary, depending upon lot-to-lot powder and component variations.
    USE ONLY FOR COMPARISON !

    Powder.type..........Filling/Loading.Ratio..Charge.....Vel..Prop.Burnt.P.max..P .muzz
    ......................................%.....Grains ....fps.....%.......psi.....psi..
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    IMR.4895............................84.5.....48.5. ....2700....98.4....40668...10587
    Accurate.2700.......................91.8.....56.3. ....2700....92.8....46789...10574
    Hodgdon.VARGET......................87.6.....50.3. ....2700....96.8....43595...10573
    Accurate.4064.......................90.6.....50.3. ....2700....99.9....42289...10535
    Vihtavuori.N540.....................87.7.....52.7. ....2700....97.9....44964...10526
    Accurate.2520.......................82.3.....50.3. ....2700....99.5....42340...10495
    Ramshot.TAC.........................79.0.....49.2. ....2700....98.6....43064...10451
    IMR.4064............................88.4.....49.6. ....2700....97.1....43783...10451
    Vihtavuori.N150.....................93.6.....52.5. ....2700....99.3....43787...10355
    Vihtavuori.N530.....................79.1.....47.2. ....2700....98.7....43334...10315
    Hodgdon.H4895.......................87.1.....50.0. ....2700....99.2....42732...10300
    Accurate.2460.......................78.0.....49.7. ....2700....99.3....44230...10242
    Hodgdon.H335........................74.5.....48.3. ....2700....99.8....43352...10108
    Accurate.2230.......................77.0.....49.0. ....2700....99.3....44666...10088
    IMR.3031............................83.4.....46.3. ....2700...100.0....41236...10055
    Accurate.2495.......................84.5.....47.5. ....2700...100.0....42846...10037
    Vihtavuori.N140.....................87.2.....49.8. ....2700...100.0....44444....9860

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  4. #12
    Contributing Member enfield303t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Chadwick View Post
    I know one of those types. After a bore-scope investigation, he told me that my original Winchester 94 in 3240 was only fit for a display cabinet, not for shooting. But my WIN94 doesn't understand Germanicon and therefore continues to shoot as well as I can point it (well OK, perhaps that's not so good any more).

    So in which competitions does your friend participate, and how well does he place? I'm not being sarcastic, but there are some shooters who are so wrapped up in load fiddling, that they lose contact with actual shooting performance. I have a 6mm BR that will produce an 0.2 MOA group at 100 meters. Unfortunately, my PWF is larger than that. In other words, I am the limiting factor, and even if the rifle could produce 0.1MOA mounted on a lead sledge, that would hardly produce any visible improvement in my scores.

    Twice as much time spent in practice under competition conditions would help me more than twice as many steps in producing "perfect" ammo. There is an old saying " a bad workman always blames his tools". Certainly, some spend more time optimizing their tools that actually learning to use them to best effect. OK, I'm old-fashioned.

    Getting back to the 30-06 (or .308 for more modern types), I think it is not correct to conflate the Garand with its .308 successor, as the distance between the muzzle and the gas port on the Garand is much shorter than on the M1Aicon. So where the Garand op-rod receives a short "puff", the MIA gets a comparatively "slow blow". Still, I appreciate the warning and will seriously consider N135 - which, by the way, is the fastest powder in the Vihtavuori loading tables for 30-06 with 130gn or heavier bullets.
    JUST WANT TO SAY...YOUR ATTITUDE STINKS...HE ISN'T ONE OF THOSE GUYS!

    Wasn't trying to start a internet war. I guarantee he is beyond anal about accuracy and has developed a load for a M1a1 that rivals the majority of bolt guns he competes against. I have been at military matches (I shoot in a different discipline) and he does amazing in open sniper. He usually places in the top 3 and competes against custom built rifles with his Springfield.

    Last competition there were 11 shooters in "open sniper" and he placed 2nd. Considering the fact a .223 has an distinct advantage over a .308 in recoil alone I personally know his efforts pay off time after time.

    He is a Canadianicon who joined the US Army and served as a forward observer in Vietnam. He is in his early 70's and considering the 15 shots at 200m are prone off elbows with no part of the gun touching the ground. The other two distances are timed/prone and a bipod is used. He competes against some custom built AR style .223's and up to Sako TRG22's so very formidable competition for a Springfield MIA1.

    Yes practice is important and he does a lot of that however every other single thing about reloading the very best round counts. Everything from neck tension to uniforming the primer pocket has a bearing on accuracy...ask the F Class shooter! His objective was to prove to us he could give the best bolt guns a serious run in competition at 200m/300m and 400m... for anyone not familiar with the metric system that is 217 yds/328 yds and 437 yds.

    Do me a favour, don't accept anything he says as having merit, I could care less.
    Why use a 50 pound bomb when a 500 pound bomb will do?

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  6. #13
    Contributing Member enfield303t's Avatar
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    My friend just called and had excellent results today with N135 and 168 gr.Sierra Match King projectiles.

    Five shot group...4 shots in 5/8 inch and one flyer (his issue) opened the group up to 2.08 inches which is more than acceptable at 200 yards.
    Why use a 50 pound bomb when a 500 pound bomb will do?

  7. #14
    Contributing Member CINDERS's Avatar
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    Cool Reloads!

    The last 3 powders is what you really want 100% burn as anything less than that your wasting money and throwing unburnt powder out the muzzle I have dabbled around with a few loads in my 6.5 x 284 over the last 6 years or so and had some interesting experiences to say the least including a S.E which I never want to experience again the result is in the picture (#1) only discovered later by the bolt knocking the safety on each time I opened the bolt on my Savage 110 LLRE.
    So I have come pretty close to taking my head off by trying a load of WIN760 ball powder with a 215Mag primer which resulted in the whole charge pretty much detonating the over pressure was so great apart from a pretty much stuck bolt that required a nylon mallet to open the primer just fell out of the case thankfully it came out alright I was trying to use a light load to get full burn for a reasonable velocity.

    I've played with lots of stuff and have after all this time settled on 4 powders & loads that work in the rifle due to shortages of powders that happen in this state from time to time also I cannot get anywhere near what Shehanne does out of his 6.5x284 without pressure signs and believe me I have all the bells and whistle but allot of whistles have been put away as in reality it was just wasting my time because I have a PWF & Flinch that I cannot cure.
    Due to a burst blood vessel I suffered in my Rt shoulder shooting clays but I kept going making it worse, owning a 444 Marlin for a number of years and just by shooting heavy kicking rifles even firing a 460WM from the benchrest position with a good max load I know when its gunna happen but release the shot anyway so I drop points big deal I am having fun but boy the cartridge loves barrels as I am just about to screw in my 4th one.

    I have done all that could be done in trying to get the best reloaded round possible each time like doing the following the meplats, runout to .0000 - .0000.5, ogive each projectile & batch them, weigh every projectile & batch them, weigh every case & batch them, TTL all cases to 2.161 exactly, uniform the pockets, AMP anneal them after every firing, de burr in & outside, precisely seat each bullet winding up the seater 5 thou each time then measuring it till it reads exactly the same for each one, plus the usual tumbling, I also sonic clean the cases after 3 firings also using same Lot cases batched any more you say nah stuff that.........(I forgot I neck turned as well for a while.)
    The upshot of it was whilst I finish near the top usually in the top 15 in Open F class I now after cutting the process to the barest of my standards have more time to spend with my wife with pretty much the same results.

    My APRS .308 I use at times shoots really well the Fig 12 (#2) was 100 yds off bi-pod, prone on the grass with no rear bag 5 rounds, its a very accurate rifle and I have not changed the load given to me by Lightforce since I brought the gun from them 10 years ago its just that good infact I won the Billy Singh sniper match shoot at Swanbourne 2 years ago with it dropping 1 point 49/50 at 600yds at a fig 11 in a field of 40 shooters.
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    Last edited by CINDERS; 07-10-2018 at 04:57 AM.

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  9. #15
    Advisory Panel Patrick Chadwick's Avatar
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    Sorry, I didn't mean it like that...

    Quote Originally Posted by enfield303t View Post
    JUST WANT TO SAY...YOUR ATTITUDE STINKS...HE ISN'T ONE OF THOSE GUYS!

    Wasn't trying to start a internet war. .
    Well, neither was I.

    Thanks, you answered my question - the guy is a serious shooter, and not an "armchair expert".

    Maybe I could have phrased it more sensitively, and I'm sorry you took it badly. But if you know a lot of shooters, then you have surely come across the types who are permanently fiddling about with microsopic load variations - in effect blaming their performance on the less-than-perfect load.

    If your friend was offended, he has my unreserved apologies.
    Last edited by Patrick Chadwick; 07-10-2018 at 11:25 AM.

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    Member Ex Crab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ovidio View Post
    I use N140 for my Garandicon in .308. Works well. With a 147 grs FMJBT I have good accuracy, good primers (no overpressure) and perfect cycling.
    Normally I prefer Lovex S060-2 because it works as well and costs 40% less. But N140 is absolutely ok for me.
    I too use N140 for my Garand (30-06). I've been using that for around 20 years and it works well with a 168 grn HPBT. I recently replaced the op rod spring and carried out the tip test at the same time. Passed no problems, so 20 years of N140 do not appear to have had a negative affect on the op rod.
    The proof of the pudding is in the eating.


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